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Yet another no start/fuel pump question

Discussion in '2001-2005 Explorer Sport Trac' started by 429CJ-3X2, December 30, 2017.

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    1. 429CJ-3X2

      429CJ-3X2 Elite Explorer

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      I drove my '01 ST last Saturday. Only went a short distance, but started it 2 or 3 times. It started and ran as usual with no problems. I tried to start it Christmas Day, and it cranked just fine but wouldn't start, and I haven't been able to start it since. Fortunately, it's at home. Unfortunately, my wife would have preferred to drive it instead of her Escort in the snow yesterday and today. What are the chances the fuel pump (probably original with 170,000+ miles) quit without warning? What else should I check? Whatever the problem is, it's not getting fixed this week with temps well below zero.
       
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    3. koda2000

      koda2000 Explorer Addict

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      Could be the fuel pump at that mileage. All of mine crapped out between 170-200K (all in the cold). Can you hear the pump run in the first 2 seconds of key ON? Check the FP relay and inertia switch.

      Spray some starting fluid in the TB and see if it kicks for a few seconds. If it does, the fuel pump isn't working. If it still does nothing check the crank sensor because you may not have spark.

      My favorite (safest) way to check for spark is to remove a spark plug wire from the engine (any plug wire) install the plug wire an old plug and clamp the old spark plug in my battery jumper cable with the other end on the neg side of the battery, then spin the engine and see if you're getting a nice strong spark.
       
      Last edited: December 30, 2017
    4. 429CJ-3X2

      429CJ-3X2 Elite Explorer

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      I've never heard of that method of checking for spark. I'll give it try once it warms up. It's 0 degrees out right now and the temps are only going down for the next few days.

      I don't know that I've ever been able to hear the fuel pump when I turn the key on. I'll have to get someone to turn the key while I listen for it, as well as helping with the other checks. I'm hoping it's not the pump, obviously, but especially since it's winter. A fuel pump isn't getting changed for awhile. Too bad they're not as easy to change as the one in the Escort where you just yank the back seat cushion out, remove a cover, and have access to the pump. Quick, simple and easy, just the way I like things.
       
    5. koda2000

      koda2000 Explorer Addict

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      I find checking for spark this way is great if you're working alone (which I typically am). It was really easy on our '97 Sport, because they still had a starter solenoid on the driver's side fender right next to the battery. All I had to do there was to touch a socket on the solenoid to jump it (with the key ON) and could see if there was a spark. In my case I was not. Turned out to be the flaky wiring to the crank sensor, Gave it a wiggle and it started right up.

      Changing the fuel pump on My '01 ST wasn't much fun either. Not because it was cold outside, but because it was 100 F in my garage. It's never a fun job, though I've learned some time saving tips over the years.

      I'd start with spraying the starting fluid as it's the easiest thing to do. A 2-3 second squirt into the TB should be enough.
       
    6. 429CJ-3X2

      429CJ-3X2 Elite Explorer

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      When I did the bed swap last summer I looked at the fuel pump location to see if it's possible to change it with the bed off, but it looks as though there's a crossmember in the way. Bummer. Since the bed was off last summer, removing it would probably be easier than dropping the tank.
       
    7. koda2000

      koda2000 Explorer Addict

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      There are only 3 bolts that hold the tank up. 2 at the front and one that holds the strap in place. I drain the tank as much as possible (down to about 2 gals). On the ST I was not able to get a siphon hose down the filler neck, so I pulled the hoses off the tank bung and stuck my siphon hose directly in the tank.

      Next I removed the 2 18mm (17mm?) bolts from the front of the tank and replaced the bolts with loose fitting tie-wraps. This allows the rear of the tank to be lowered (with the tie-wraps acting like a hinge) once the tank strap bolt is removed. Lower the tank slowly using a floor jack with a piece of wood on top of it.

      As the tank is lowered, disconnect the wires and evap hose from the top of the tank.

      Once the rear of the tank can be lowered to the ground, vacuum/blow off or hose off the top of the tank to remove dirt that might fall into the tank, remove the small bolts that hold the fuel pump assembly in the tank.

      The fuel pump assembly can be removed from the tank without removing the fuel line and slung over the leaf spring to work on it. I always purchase Bosch fuel pumps because they're reliable and come with everything needed to replace the pump (including enough submersible fuel line to replace the pump to regulator and regulator to fuel pipe hoses). I believe Bosch PN 69128 is what I bought for my ST. The only other things I had to purchase was a new strainer sock and fuel filter.

      After reinstalling the FP assembly, raise the tank and reconnect everything in reverse order. My time start to finish is about 90 mins and I don't work quickly.

      If you go with the Bosch kit you'll find there's a bunch of stuff that it comes with that you will not need (O-rings mostly).

      Link:
      NEW Bosch Electric Fuel Pump 69128 Ford F-150 E-150 Contour Explorer 1988-2004 | eBay
       
      Last edited: December 30, 2017
    8. gtyates

      gtyates Active Member

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      It could also be the fuel inertia switch, located in the passenger side kick panel inside the cab. There is a reset button on top of it. I had kine go out with no warning and my symptoms were exactly the same as yours.
       
    9. beepinX

      beepinX Active Member

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      Great resource, thanks! We will be working on a 2001 Explorer right after we finished the new suspension, racks, and some other jeep aftermarket parts and light accessories on the current Wrangler project. The Explorer's fuel pump been acting up and probably needs a replacement.
       
    10. 429CJ-3X2

      429CJ-3X2 Elite Explorer

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      koda, thanks for posting the link to the fuel pump on ebay in the similar thread in the 2nd Gen Explorer forum! Finally got warm enough to work on it today. All I did today was spray penetrant towards the threads on the bolts. None of the local parts stores have a fuel pump, so I needed to order one. I did a search for tips on dropping the tank (forgot you told me above) and changing the filter & saw your link to the pump on ebay & ordered one for less than half of what Advance wants for the same pump. I hope to change the filter and drop the tank tomorrow & have everything ready to swap pumps & put it back together next weekend.
       
    11. koda2000

      koda2000 Explorer Addict

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      Glad to have helped. If you have any questions during the pump install just ask. I consider myself a bit of an expert on this repair.

      BTW - My late production '01 ST had one of the weird 3 port fuel filters. I found this a difficult part to source in-stock locally. Ford dealer didn't even have one. O'Reilly's was the only auto parts store that had one in stock. I still can't understand the reason/purpose for the 3rd port, but everything else associated with the fuel pump replacement was the same as on my '01 Explorer EB 5.0L except for the fuel filter.

      Tips - The evap hose connection to the tank is tricky. It's gray plastic and must be squeezed to get it to release. If you end up breaking the gray plastic piece during attempting to remove it it's okay. It will stay in place w/out all of the retaining ring.

      The wiring harness to the tank is clipped to the inside of the left frame rail, just over the axle. Punch the clips through the holes in the frame to get more wiggle room. Push the clips back through the holes when done.

      The tank strap keys into the left frame rail. It can be removed (push the tank to the right) to make lowering it easier. Bend it if necessary, just bend it back during reassembly.

      If your fill and vent hose clamps are rusted, carefully cut them off with a Dremel tool using a thin cutting disk and replace with new hose clamps.

      Where gloves and eye protection when dealing with the fill and vent hoses. Nothing will get you dirtier than old oxidized rubber.

      Have fun!
       
    12. 429CJ-3X2

      429CJ-3X2 Elite Explorer

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      This truck has the normal 2 ports, 1 in & 1 out. Just curious - does your ST have a steel or plastic tank? Everything I remember reading says the tanks are plastic, but this one is steel. My '02 has a plastic tank.
       
    13. koda2000

      koda2000 Explorer Addict

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      Steel.
       
    14. 429CJ-3X2

      429CJ-3X2 Elite Explorer

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      Where's the Schraeder valve on a Job 2 SOHC? I'm not seeing it. My truck hasn't run in a month, so there's probably little pressure in the line, but I really don't want a gasoline shower!

      The two bolts at the front of the tank are 13mm. Got those backed out easily, but only because I sprayed them a couple of times with Pyroil penetrating fluid and let them soak. That stuff works well. Haven't tried the bolt on the strap yet. I need to get the truck raised up a little. Not going to finish his job until next Saturday anyway because I have to wait for the pump and I won't home from work until dark. Also have to go back and get a tool for the filter. I almost bought one yesterday, but thought the one I have was the right size. It isn't. 3/8 is as small as it goes.
       
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    15. koda2000

      koda2000 Explorer Addict

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      IDK I would assume somewhere on the passenger side fuel rail. I'll look at mine in a few mins.

      There wont be any pressure left in the fuel line (I assume you're talking about replacing the fuel filter), but there's usually enough fuel in the filter and line that it's going to probably at least run up for arm. Where eye protection. When I changed my ST's filter (even though the truck hadn't run in probably at least a year) The fuel ran right into my ear. Hurt like hell for about 10 mins. Almost thought I'd have to make a trip to the ER. Avoid doing that.

      I'm pretty sure my 2 front tank bolts were 17 MM or 18 MM, but I could be wrong. 13 MM sounds way small, unless it just a small head... ? IIRC my tank strap bolt was 13 MM. I put anti-seize on my tank bolts during reassembly for next time, but mine had no rust and came out easily.

      My fuel filters (all of them) come off the easiest using a 5/16 line tool. The one time I disconnected the line at the fuel pump assembly (which was a total PITA and unnecessary) the only size that worked for me was a 3/8 tool.

      Edit:
      Looked for a Schraeder valve on my Job 2 and don't see one. It may be there somewhere, but there's a lot of stuff covering up the fuel rails.
       
      Last edited: January 20, 2018 at 2:19 PM

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